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Filipina gets suspended sentence for throwing mug at boardmate

24 August 2021

By Vir B. Lumicao 

The Eastern Court magistrate found the defendant had deliberately thrown a mug at the victim

A Filipina domestic helper who injured a fellow helper on the face after throwing a mug at her was sentenced to three months in jail, suspended for three years, after being found guilty of assault.

Lilian Regidor, 33, had claimed she did not intend to hit the victim, Virgie Decena, 53, when she angrily threw a ceramic mug during a quarrel in their boarding house in Sai Wan on Jan. 9.


But Eastern Court Magistrate Peony Wong dismissed the claim after two days of trial, and found Regidor guilty on a charge of assault occasioning bodily harm.

The court heard that the incident took place around 2:30pm on Jan 9, after the defendant was roused from her nap by a noisy dispute. A boarder named Loida lost her newly topped Octopus card and demanded to see the serial number of Decena’s Octopus card.

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Upset by the noise, Regidor got up and rebuked Decena, telling her she had been doing bad things. Decena fought back, calling the defendant a gossip, sparking the assault.     

The magistrate rejected Regidor’s claim that she had thrown the mug at a table as she was being pulled back into her room to break up the fight.


The magistrate said she found it incredible that the mug accelerated after bouncing off the table, hitting the corner of Decena’s right eye before striking her upper lip on the way down.

She said if the mug bounced on the table, it would not have been able to cause serious injuries to the victim’s right eye and right upper lip, causing the teeth on her right upper jaw to wobble. 


Wong said she was inclined to believe the victim’s claim that the mug was thrown directly at her, causing the injuries.

The magistrate said her finding matched the medical report on how the victim’s injuries were sustained.

The thrown mug hit the victim in the eye and lip, and caused her teeth to wobble

The defense lawyer said Regidor came to Hong Kong to work as a domestic helper in 2011 and is now on her sixth contract with the same employer. She sends home most of her salary.

She is married to a farmer who earns the equivalent of $5,000 from his harvest, and supports her parents as well as two younger siblings who are still in high school.

The lawyer asked that the defendant be meted a fine so she could continue working.

Wong said that after considering the defendant’s clear record and remorse, she decided to impose a suspended sentence.

Outside the courtroom, the defendant said she continues to work for her Indian employers.

During the trial, her female employer showed up in court to show support, saying the Filipina is a good and honest employee who has served her family for over 10 years.


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